BOSTON (AP) – The ball settled into the right fielder’s glove, the Cleveland Indians poured onto the diamond and the fans fell silent.
Then, slowly from the Fenway Park crowd rose a chant of “Pa-pi!”
While the Indians celebrated a 4-3 victory over the Red Sox for a three-game sweep and a berth in the AL Championship Series, the Boston fans demanded to see David Ortiz one more time Monday night. Ten minutes after the final out, when most of Cleveland’s players had moved the party into the visitors’ clubhouse, chants of “We’re not leaving!” and “Thank you, Papi!” finally drew the beloved slugger back onto thefield.
Wearing a red warmup and a scowl on his face, Ortiz lumbered out to the mound and tipped his cap in all directions, tapping his heart. Only when the camera zoomed in on him did it become apparent that the frown was not regret over an early postseason exit: Big Papi was crying.
After two minutes, Ortiz retired to the dugout and retired for good, ending to a career that brought three World Series titles to Boston and transformed the once-futile franchise into winners.
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